Best Uganda Gorilla Trekking Sector: Rushaga is the best sector for gorilla tracking found in Bwindi Impenetrable National Park in the South Western part of Uganda. Rushaga provides the great points for the uninterrupted scenic views of the canopy walks and other surrounding places such as the clear views of Lake Mutanda as well as the Virunga Mountains of Rwanda.

The Rushaga sector is also the best sector with the highest concentration of the gorilla families in the whole of Bwindi Impenetrable Forest National Park located between Kabale and Nkuringo, with visitors arriving from either Ruhija or Kampala. Because the terrain is dominated by steep hills, habituated gorilla groups have continued to split and subdivide to take up different hills in the area. Rushaga Is also the only area permitted for habituation experience for four hours with the mountain Gorillas, hiking such as the waterfall hike and cultural interactive experiences.

Despite the fact that the Bwindi Impenetrable Forest National Park is home to more than 410 gorillas presenting more than half of the world’s remaining endangered mountain gorillas, the Rushaga region of Bwindi has the most gorillas, with five gorilla families, compared to other sectors, which have three or fewer gorilla families, making Rushaga one of the best regions in Bwindi for gorilla trekking and gorilla habituation. Nshongi, Busingye, Kungye, Bweza, and Mishaya are some of the gorilla families found in Rushaga.

Gorilla Behaviors

Gorillas in Uganda are very shy and gentle primates but can become very aggressive and violent when they feel insecure or disturbed. In this case a visitor is allowed only one hour to interact with them, take photos, and ask any questions he/she wants to know also they make sure that they do all of these while standing at a 7-meter distance. Mountain Gorillas normally charge by beating their chests, tearing and throwing vegetation and making loud hoots and grunts.

Best Uganda Gorilla Trekking Sector

Where do gorillas live in Uganda?

Mountain gorillas in Uganda are found in 2 National parks, Bwindi Impenetrable National Park and Mgahinga Gorilla National Park both in the South Western part of Uganda.

  • Bwindi Impenetrable National Park

Bwindi Impenetrable National Park is located in the southwestern region of Uganda on the edge of the Albertine rift valley near the boarder of Democratic republic of Congo. It is approximately 331 square kilometers and accessed only on foot. It is one of the most bio-diverse forests in Africa with one of the best ecosystems on the continent.

The park can be reached from Kampala via Mbarara (9–10 hours) by road. The park can also be accessed by air from Entebbe or Kampala (Kajjansi air field) to the tarmac airstrip at Kisoro. Bwindi is well served by three airstrips Kayonza, Kihihi and Nyakabande.

It is famously known as a home of mountain Gorillas and Gorilla tracking is the main activity in this place. The park shelters over 400 mountain Gorillas but there are also many other mammals like Black and white colombus, Bush pigs, Giant forest hogs, Vervet monkeys, Baboons and many others.

Bwindi Impenetrable National Park has 4 tracking sectors and these include;

  • Buhoma sector

Buhoma is the premier gorilla trekking sector in Bwindi Impenetrable Forest National Park, which is situated on the northwestern side of the park. This sector is mainly found in the Bwindi Impenetrable Forest National Park, which is largely found in the Kanungu district. Buhoma was the first sector where gorilla trekking activity was first announced.

This means that the popularity of gorilla trekking in Bwindi and throughout Uganda started in the Buhoma sector, and this makes it a wonderful sector because of the history that is attached to it. The history of gorilla tourism has gotten its originality from the Buhoma since 1993, when the Bwindi forest was gazetted as a national park.

The Mubare Gorilla Family was the first habituated gorilla family in this sector, and it was the first gorilla family ever trekked and seen by visitors in Uganda. Therefore, you are right to say that in Bwindi Forest and Uganda in general, this section was the pioneer of gorilla trekking.

When the Mubare gorilla family was opened for monitoring in 1993, the area was the first to welcome the first group of gorilla hikers. Rushegura, Mubare, and Habinyanja are three gorilla families that have been tracked in this area.

  • Ruhija sector

Ruhija is one of the best gorilla trekking sectors of Bwindi Impenetrable Forest National Park and it is found on the eastern side of the park. The Ruhija Gorilla Trekking Sector can be easily accessed through other destinations such as the Queen Elizabeth National Park and the sector’s major tourist attractions, like other sectors, is the endangered mountain gorillas. Visitors usually come to Bwindi to enjoy the wonders of this wonderful sector because it provides a high chance for them to enjoy the wonderful gorillas easily.

While in Ruhija sector, You have the option of staying the night at Ishasha or continuing north to the Mweya Peninsula and the Kazinga Channel, Queens’ heart.

One should get to know that during the high tourism season in Uganda, permits can easily be sold out and consumed by tourists who prefer to walk in a less congested location than Buhoma, which is usually congested with tourists.

Ruhija, without a doubt, provides a more ecotourism experience than other sectors for gorilla trekking in Bwindi because it is less congested, allowing tourists to enjoy their trek through the forest as their guides provide ample explanations about the various tree, animal, and bird species in the forest. Tourists can also interact with the gorillas for an hour, making for a fascinating experience.

  • Rushaga sector

Rushaga is one of the wonderful and famous sector that provides the great points for the uninterrupted scenic views of the canopy walks and other surrounding places such as the clear views of Lake Mutanda as well the Virunga Mountains of Rwanda. The Rushaga sector is one of the best destination or sector for the gorilla trekking because it is the best sector with the highest concentration of the gorilla families in the Park.

Tourists trekking gorillas from Rushaga have amazing beautiful views, and at some points, they can see the Virunga Mountains in Rwanda and Uganda, which include Sabinyo, Mgahinga, Karusimbi, Muhavura, and Bisoke, among others. There’s Lake Mutanda, which is one of Uganda’s only two lava-damaged lakes. Before or after your gorilla hike, you may take a canoe ride on the lake.

  • Nkuringo sector

Nkuringo sector is located In the southern part of Bwindi Impenetrable National Park. It is a home of the gorilla family named “Nkuringo” this family was named after the rolling hills where it was first sighted. The family has 12 members that was led by the silverback Nkuringo who died in 2008 and later Rafik silverback took over the power.

Mgahinga Gorilla National Park

Mgahinga Gorilla National Park “where Gold meets Silver” is located in the southwestern region of Uganda, Kisoro district in Virunga Mountains and contains three active volcanoes Mount Muhavura, Mount Gahinga and Mount Sabinyo. It is contiguous with Rwanda’s Volcanoes national park and southern sector of Virunga National Park in the Democratic republic of Congo.

It is Uganda’s smallest National park with 33.7 square kilometers. It was gazzeted as a National park in 1991 and takes its name from Gahinga the local word for the piles of volcanic stones cleared from farmland at the foot of the volcanoes.

The park was created to protect mountain Gorillas and endangered golden monkey and other wildlife. It also has a huge cultural significance for the indigenous Batwa pygmies.

Mgahinga Gorilla National Park does not have tracking sectors.

How to access gorilla trekking sectors

Its is 8-9 hours drive from Kampala through Mbarara to Bwindi Impenetrable National park and 2-3 hours drive from Queen Elizabeth National Park to Bwindi Impenetrable National park by road.

Travelers can also choose to travel by air for 1 hour from Entebbe International airport or Kajjansi airfield to Bwindi Impenetrable National Park. The park is blessed with 3 airstrips that is Kihihi, Kayonza and Nyakabande